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The So-called Human Race   By: (1866-1921)

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The So Called Human Race

BOOKS BY BERT LESTON TAYLOR A PENNY WHISTLE THE SO CALLED HUMAN RACE THE EAST WINDOW ( Fall, 1922 ) And others in a uniform collected edition, to be ready later. New York: Alfred · A · Knopf

The So Called Human Race

by Bert Leston Taylor

Arranged, with an Introduction, by Henry B. Fuller

New York 1922 Alfred · A · Knopf


Published, March, 1922 Second Printing, April, 1922

Set up and electrotyped by J. J. Little & Ives Co., New York, N. Y. Paper furnished by W. F. Etherington & Co., New York, N. Y. Printed by the Vail Ballou Co., Binghamton, N. Y. Bound by the H. Wolff Estate, New York, N. Y.



Once upon a summer's night Mused a mischief making sprite, Underneath the leafy hood Of a fairy haunted wood. Here and there, in light and shade, Ill assorted couples strayed: "Lord," said Puck, in elfish glee, "Lord, what fools these mortals be!"

Now he sings the self same tune Underneath an older moon. Life to him is, plain enough, Still a game of blind man's buff. If we listen we may hear Puckish laughter always near, And the elf's apostrophe, "Lord, what fools these mortals be!"

B. L. T.


By Henry B. Fuller

Bert Leston Taylor (known the country over as "B. L. T.") was the first of our day's "colyumists" first in point of time, and first in point of merit. For nearly twenty years, with some interruptions, he conducted "A Line o' Type or Two" on the editorial page of the Chicago Tribune . His broad column broad by measurement, broad in scope, and a bit broad, now and again, in its tone cheered hundreds of thousands at the breakfast tables of the Middle West, and on its trains and trolleys. As the "Column" grew in reputation, "making the Line" became almost a national sport. Whoever had a happy thought, whoever could handily turn a humorous paragraph or tune a pointed jingle, was only too glad to attempt collaboration with B. L. T. Others, possessing no literary knack, chanced it with brief reports on the follies or ineptitudes of the "so called human race." Some of them picked up their matter on their travels these were the "Gadders." Others culled oddities from the provincial press, and so gave further scope to "The Enraptured Reporter," or offered selected gems of gaucherie from private correspondence, and thus added to the rich yield of "The Second Post." Still humbler helpers chipped in with queer bits of nomenclature, thereby aiding the formation of an "Academy of Immortals" an organization fully officered by people with droll names and always tending, as will become apparent in the following pages, to enlarge and vary its roster.

All these contributors, as well as many other persons who existed independently of the "Line," lived in the corrective fear of the "Cannery," that capacious receptacle which yawned for the trite word and the stereotyped phrase. Our language, to B. L. T., was an honest, living growth: deadwood, whether in thought or in the expression of thought, never got by, but was marked for the burning... Continue reading book >>

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